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It was only a matter of time before Lexus swooped up the Grand Highlander platform and made a seven-passenger Lexus luxury SUV. Lexus is reportedly planning to make a new seven-passenger SUV based on the upcoming Grand Highlander platform, which means that Lexus should now have four seven-passenger SUVs. The TX would be the first Lexus designed to carry seven full-sized adults and fill a niche that Lexus hasn’t covered. The big GX and LX are truck-like SUVs, while the RX 350L’s rear seats are cramped for anyone other than kids.  

The TX will be based on the upcoming Toyota Grand Highlander

A silver gray 2022 Toyota Highlander. The new TX will be built on a lengthened version of this popular Toyota.
2022 Toyota Highlander XLE | Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

Toyota will base the new TX is on the upcoming Toyota Grand Highlander platform, according to U.S. News. The Grand Highlander will be a longer version of the popular Highlander, which is a car-based SUV. It is expected in 2023 as a 2024 model. The Highlander is a popular SUV for Toyota. Its unibody construction means that it handles better than a truck-like SUV yet can get better mileage. Also, you can order the Highlander as a hybrid with Toyota’s clever all-wheel drive that simply adds an electric motor for the back wheels.

Lexus has a long history of taking basic Toyota SUVs and making them luxurious. The GX, for example, is based on the Toyota Prado, which is a tough off-road SUV that we don’t get in the U.S. from Toyota. The giant LX is based on the Land Cruiser that we also don’t get in the U.S. But both of those SUVs are body-on-frame SUVs that are more truck-based than car-based. The only car-based seven-seat Lexus today is the RX in L versions.

The competition will be fierce for a seven-passenger Lexus

The 2022 Mercedes-Benz GLS is Consumer Reports worst luxury large SUV, but it isn't all that bad.
2022 Mercedes-Benz GLS | Mercedes-Benz USA

The large, car-based, SUV market is hot and that means there’s a lot of competition for a large seven or eight-seat SUV. The TX will go against the Mercedes-Benz GLS, the Audi Q7, BMW’s X7, and the Land Rover Defender 130. All of these SUVs are luxurious, fast, and expensive. The TX seven-passenger Lexus will have to bring power and grace, and hybrid power, to be competitive.

The Mercedes GLS premium SUV offers several engine options and buyers like its luxury amenities and smooth driving dynamics. The BMW X7 and Audi’s Q7 are more-sporty and offer sports car-like driving dynamics and big engines, but will seven-passenger utility. The Lexus TX would have to split the difference between these to stand out and offer enough luxury, but also enough speed, to stand out in this competitive marketplace.

The RX can be ordered as a seven-passenger Lexus

A gray Lexus RX350Lin a driveway
2022 Lexus RX 350L | Lexus

7-Passenger Shootout: 2023 Toyota Sequoia vs. the Grand Highlander

The Lexus RX 350L will likely be overshadowed by the TX. The RX L comes standard as a five-passenger SUV with an optional third row. The L version looks just like the regular RX and both have high-quality luxurious interiors and a ton of safety options. If you parked the L next to a regular RX, you’d notice a longer wheelbase to make room for more passengers. But not more stuff. The RX starts at about $52,000, while the L version is a $5,000 premium.

You can order an RX as a gas-powered SUV, a hybrid, or a plug-in hybrid.